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20 Jun 2016

Chess960 SP814

Chess960 SP814

This game features quite a lot of bad moves, more than there usually is in my games, made by both players. I think I replied with the most natural way to the move 1.e4 by playing e5, but one might argue that my second move was not the ideal response. The move that might have been annoying to face was 3.Bc4, so that I could not move the f-pawn so easily. However, there should not be all that much wrong with my second move because 3.Bc4 would only mean that I would need to develop my pieces a bit differently, or at least in a different order, so that if and when I play f6, my bishop would be protected by my rook on e8. DAV-5000 decided to play 3.c3 instead, in order to prepare d4. There was really no way that I could stop the pawn advance, so I continued with Ng6. The game went on evenly until I played 5...Bb4. My 5th move was a mistake because after 6.Nc3 I can no longer play d5 or f5. I should have taken the opportunity to play 5...d5, which would have opened up the diagonal for the queen and I would have also stopped my opponent from playing d5, which could have been quite annoying to face. 5...d5 works because if 6.exd5, Rxe1 wins material. Actually looking at the analysis now, I could have played 6...d5 instead of 6...d6. This is because I should get the pawn back. If 6...d5 7.exd5 Rxe1 8.Qxe1 then Nce7 and the pawn is likely to be won from d5. The move 6...d6 put me in more trouble and I was getting closer to a losing position with almost every move I made.

I was clearly on the worse side of things until my opponent played 8.b4, which enabled me to get back into an equal position. However, my position quickly deteriorated, first with a small mistake 9...f6 and then with the blunder 10...a5. The idea behind a5 was that it might activate my rook and it seemed to be a good move if my opponent either does not move the b-pawn or takes on a5. The third option, moving the b-pawn one square forward made my move a5 look a bit silly. I was not at all happy with my position, but I was not going to resign anytime soon either. I responded to 12.Na4 with Ba7 because I did not like the looks of Nxb6 and I also realised that if DAV-5000 takes on a5 with the queen, then I could reply with Bxd4. I did saw the move 13.b6 during the game and I was worried that my opponent might play that move, but luckily DAV-5000 decided to play 13.Bd3 instead, which did not make much sense to me. With 13.b6 my opponent would have been very close to having a winning advantage. The move played in the game, 13.Bd3, was a mistake that cost my opponent a lot of his or her advantage. Some of that advantage I gave back immediately with my reply. After my 16th move I was already in a losing position. During the game I was a bit more optimistic and thought that I can somehow hang on in the game.

Due to some inaccurate moves by my opponent, I could have indeed been able to get a more equal position after 20.Ba2, but I played another horrible move and I was losing the game again after 20...Nc4. I did not understand how badly placed my pieces are on the e-file until I saw the move 21.exd5 being played. I was pretty much losing some material no matter what, so I played 21...Nxd2 because I thought that it would be my best chance to survive the following moves. I was quite lost until on move 26, DAV-5000 gave me another opportunity to get back into the game. I was very surprised to see 26.Ne4, because it allowed my knight to get away from d2 by trading it to the knight on e4. Had my opponent instead put more pressure to the knight with other pieces, then DAV-5000 could have have won the knight as it did not have any safe squares to go to. That move did not help me all that much and I stayed on the worse side of things. I did make things even worse for me with the move 27...Ne3 and I went from being clearly worse to completely losing. The rare opportunities for getting an even position, like after 29.Re2, I was not able take advantage of, but instead ruined my chances immediately. On move 39, DAV-5000 finally made a blunder that could have meant my victory, but I did not react to the move correctly and handed over the winning advantage back to my opponent. I remember thinking during the game the move Ke8, but for some reason I thought that it was unnecessary and pushing the a-pawn was more important. Had I played 39...Ke8 first and then started to push the a-pawn, I might have had easier time in this game. The rest of the game was really blunder filled and all three outcomes were possible, then quite near the end when my opponent should have had an easy win, DAV-5000 blundered with 64.Kf8. That was a huge opportunity for me to turn things around and be completely winning, had I taken on h7 that is. The move 64.Kf8 was so unexpected that I simply forgot that I can take the pawn at that moment. I only considered checking the king and pushing the pawn... Then I pushed the pawn and gave the win to my opponent. These are the kind of losses that should not happen to me anymore, but somehow I crumble under time pressure sometimes. I have added three mate in two, one mate in three and one mate in four puzzle today. I noticed that one of the puzzles in the mate in four page was not actually a puzzle because it had the moves included at the start, so I have fixed that now.

If you want to see my live commentary of this game, you can view the video below.